01 April 2012

China Tour ~ Macau, without Jamie Packer

On our second visit we learn that there's much more to Macau than booze and casinos.

The first thing we see when we cross the border from mainland China to Macau is Casino tout hotties and happy fluffy friends (hey kids, gambling is fun!). It's quite surreal.

Off into the Macau sunset, ahem, afternoon smog. We spend New Years at an expat party in a groovy renovated old Chinese apartment overlooking the harbour. Really should have taken the camera, but it was nice to leave it at home for once. Party folks kept asking us if we were 'win people'. We didn't know what this meant, and were scared it had something to do with putting keys in a hat. Turned out folks were asking us if we worked at the Wynn Casino, we must be Wynn material, whatever that is.

It's been couple of years since we've been to Macau and we're keen to get into some Macau coffee shop cuisine, which is similar to our beloved Hong Kong coffee shop cuisine.

Meatball noodles Chaozhou style and pork chop noodle soup, soothes a New Year hangover.

This place almost looks groovy on the inside.

Macau coffee shop menu.

Macau coffee shop menu.

Macau coffee shop menu.

Macau coffee shop menu.

Macau coffee shop menu with some hand drawn alterations.

Macau coffee shop menu.

Macau coffee shop menu.

Macau coffee shop menu. Alison got hooked on hot Ovaltine. Why don't they call it Roundtine?

Yum cha at the Old Lisboa Casino, with friends Bob The Builder, Green Eggs, Sophia Lauren Jr and Miss Causeway Bay, 2012.

How's that for a feast? Shawn forgot to check his camera settings and underexposed the pictures. Idiot. Doesn't matter, we've eaten here before (it's awesome).

Tops diners. Wouldn't mess with any of those ladies.

No room for dessert, dammit.

Groovy casino, you can just imagine some 70's chop socky film getting made here.

Miss Causeway Bay suggests hotpot for dinner, so we hit this joint in Macau proper.

Turns out to be a popular joint.

Hotpot fixins.

Beware the spicy half of the broth.

Our friends' neighbours were newlyweds - we think all this stuff means "don't bother knockin'."

Another Macau cafe breakfast. By this stage we were picking dishes at random from the Chinese menu. Alison picked a winner with the luncheon meat and egg soup. According to Alison's notes, the other soup is "mixed bits soup with noodles".

Bob the Builder takes us out for lunch.

He takes us to a Burmese joint - we're over the moon with ethno-food-nerd-joy!

Bob the Builder goes for Burmese pork curry with rice.

Free side soup.

Chili soup.

Noodle salad. It was OK but Shawn wishes he ordered the thing the lady persuaded him not to.

Sweet curry on noodles and salad - Alison always picks the winners.

Roti and spicy dip.

Love the ordering system.

Random Macau restaurants. There are laws in Macau which mean all signs have to be in Chinese and Portuguese. The influence of Portuguese is slowly fading.

Look at this beautiful sidewalk palace.

That gas tank is from a 1950's scifi movie. Take me to your restaurant, earthling.

Tops dining alley.

"Red Market" - Macau wet market.

Dessert cart. Gimme.

Rice dumplings in black bean paste - refreshing, sweet and utterly delicious.

The dumplings are filled with sweet goo.

Tops ladies.

A box of Patricks on the sidewalk.

Random pick'n'mix restaurant.

A friendly Macau resident we met down by the docks.

Chinese brickie apparatus..

Downtown Macau has some lovely old streets. Evil casinos loom in the background.

BBQ pork shop.

The centre tourist area of Macau is packed with Hong Kong and mainland daytrippers.

Waffle lady.

Pressed shredded squid man.

Downtown Macau has a lovely ye olde China vibe without the grit and the grime of Mainland China, yet without feeling sanitized. It's a great place to wander aimlessly and get lost. We're very good at that.

The Heong Tou Cafe in old Macau, it looks decades old, so groovy.


Alison gets wild with spicy sardine macaroni - a tomato pasta dish with a lovely big sardine doing backstroke.

The uber Macau coffee shop classic - a pork chop bun - simply a fried pork chop in a fresh soft white bread bun. Much nicer than the greasier version of this we've had up in the main tourist strip.

Super happy sidewalk vendo man.

The tastiest tripe on a stick we've ever had.

Stuff on sticks stall.

Waffle lady.

Great market street.

Fruit and veg stalls.

Beautiful googie.

Scratch me happy!

Chinese sausages in the market street.

Tops nanna getting her grand-kiddy a soy milk treat.

Fruit shopping. These big pomelos we saw used as temple offerings.

Bean paste making.

Black sesame paste under construction.

We're lured into McDonalds by the Prosperity Burger.

But we walk out with a red bean pie. We must admit it was delicious, much sweeter and 'jamier' than your regular red bean paste, but so nice. Good one Ronald.

Random BBQ joint.

Josie our doggie flatmate over the last few days is sad we're leaving...

Our final breakfast in Macau before getting the ferry to Hong Kong: a pork chop roll and a pork'n'preserved veggie noodle soup.

Next stop, Hong Kong. We love Macau.


  1. Hey great post as usual guys. All sooo yummy.

  2. Great pictures! That really made me want to go to Macau! Can't wait to read your Hong Kong report...

  3. Yay, can't wait to see your HK post, i'm going back in 2 wks and super excited! lol

  4. Can't wait for the HK post! :) Thanks as always for the furry friend pics!

  5. Make me feel real hungry with all those pix... do you mind sharing the number of days you stay over in Macau?

  6. I miss Macau very much! I cannot believe I have been away from it 8 months! Hope you guys tried the famous tarts in Macau. The Andrew cafe's Tuna salad with potato has a very special sauce topping.

  7. Do you happen to know how I can find the dessert cart and the Burmese restaurant in Macau? I am currently there and I would love to eat in those places?

    1. Hi Anna, the desert cart was outside the 'Red Market'. the fresh food market in the centre of Macau. The market is located at the intersection of Avenida Almirante Lacerda and Avenida Horta e Costa. The Burmese was right near a small area called the three lamps district(near the food market as well). We don't recall the name of the street.

  8. Do you happen to know the address (or what locations are nearby) of the dessert cart and the Burmese restaurant? I am currently in Macau and would love to try those eating establishments!

  9. Hi Anna,
    I would really appreciate your help in pointing me in the right direction as to where most of the concentration of these restaurants where the locals go..like the chinese barbecue joint in your picture, the hotpot restaurant, as well as the 1st few pictures where you mentioned the inside almost looked groovy...I am really confused as to the city layout of macau. Hence I always end up eating in those hotels and their foodcourts :(
    would really appreciate it if you can give me some tips on which roads to go to :) thanks in advance!

    1. Macau is a little confusing, we stayed with some friends so we were driven around or walked around different spots. We stayed in Taipa so most of the breakfast places are near the big Nova City complex. We walked around in Macau around the old part of the city, try around the Red Market area for more of the 'interesting' food. I also remember being close to the Old Taipa Tavern, there were some good looking places near there. I'll confirm with Bob The Builder (our host) for more info.

    2. Alison thank you so much for the prompt reply ! pardon my asking, which is the Nova City complex in Taipa? Is this near or part of the Rua de Cunha? I will most likely stay in one of the Cotai strip hotels - which as I understand is right next to Taipa right? :( I really do sound confused right? :)
      thanks again :)


Thanks for your comment joy - please keep your musings happy - if you want to complain about a restaurant please do it on a restaurant review site (or your own blog) - we're all about celebrating cultural diversity and the great eats that come along with it :-)

Our ethics: We pay for all our own meals and travel (though sometimes Mum shouts us).